376 pp., 6.125 x 9.25, 30 halftones,1 map, 1 family tree
Paperback ISBN: 978-1-4696-1902-6
Published: August 2014
eBook ISBN: 978-0-8078-8250-4
Published: May 2012
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Awards & distinctions
2013 Julia Cherry Spruill Prize, Southern Association for Women Historians
Finalist, 2013 George Washington Book Prize, Washington College, the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History and George Washington's Mount Vernon
2012 Slattern Award for Virginia Biography, Virginia Historical Society
Following her mother's death, Patsy lived in Paris with her father and later served as hostess at the President's House and at Monticello. Her marriage to Thomas Mann Randolph, a member of Congress and governor of Virginia, was often troubled. She and her eleven children lived mostly at Monticello, greeting famous guests and debating issues ranging from a woman's place to slavery, religion, and democracy. And later, after her family's financial ruin, Patsy became a fixture in Washington society during Andrew Jackson's presidency. In this extraordinary biography, Kierner offers a unique look at American history from the perspective of this intelligent, tactfully assertive woman.
About the Author
Cynthia A. Kierner is professor of history at George Mason University.
For more information about Cynthia A. Kierner, visit the Author Page.
"Cynthia Kierner's intriguing new biography of Martha Jefferson Randolph . . . is the first to tell her story from her point of view. It gives depth to the history of elite white southern women and their responsibilities, liabilities, and possibilities in the Early National period and illuminates the family ripples widening from the splash Jefferson created by taking up with his slave, Sally Hemings."--Women's Review of Books
"Kierner succeeds in presenting a well-cited clear view of Martha's role both behind the scenes of a notable historical figure and as an example of the rarely chronicled contributions of women during the early American era."--Publishers Weekly
"[A] thoroughly researched and thoughtfully written account. . . . This will have wide appeal to students of American history, women's studies, and biography."--Library Journal
“[A] prodigiously researched and beautifully written book.”--The Washington Times
“This book is a welcome addition to Jeffersonian scholarship.”--Virginia Magazine
"[The] definitive biography of Thomas Jefferson’s oldest and favorite daughter. The fascinating, well-researched work is a three-dimensional look at a person who was usually seen in history as no more than Jefferson’s hostess."--Rocky Mount Telegram